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Bob is a partner in the Chicago law firm of Nisen & Elliott LLC and represents private clients in matters of federal tax law, estates, trusts and family business enterprise.  Bob sits on the board of Watt Publishing Company, a fourth generation family owned international publishing company. He received his Shodan black belt in 1999 and continues to train regularly in Shotokan karate at the North Shore Dojo with Sensei Kohn.



Rick Hiton has trained at North Shore Dojo since 1982. He is a Nidan Black Belt. Rick owns a Chicagoland real estate appraisal practice since 1981. He has two children, Lisa and Merrick. Rick is also a Deerfield Police Commissioner.



David is the managing partner of the Chicago office of Seyfarth Shaw LLP, a full service law firm with 9 domestic offices and more than 750 lawyers.  David has been a practicing labor and employment lawyer for more than twenty years.  He has previously served a Member of the Board of Education for School District 28 in Northbrook, IL and as President of the Parish Council at St. Norbert's Church in Northbrook.  David has four children, three of whom have black belts in karate.



Dr. Darren Brenner is a gastroenterologist in Chicago, Illinois and is affiliated with Northwestern Memorial Hospital. He received his medical degree from University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine. Dr. Brenner was one of Sensei Jeff Kohn's students growing up and is a third degree black belt. 


SENSEI JEFF KOHN has been the director and head instructor of North Shore Dojo since its inception in 1979. In February 2010, he was officially appointed USA Karate Chairman of the USA Karate Disabled Program by the United States Olympic Committee. In addition, Sensei Kohn has been invited by the WKF to bring a US National Team to compete in the 2012 World Championships in Paris, France. Sensei Kohn is a graduate with a degree in Physical Education from Illinois State University, as well as a 7th Degree Black Belt and Master Instructor.  He serves as technical advisor to the Board of Directors.


SASHA GERRITSON is the Executive Director of the Karate Can-Do Foundation and North Shore Dojo. In addition to her work with the dojo, she is on the Board of Trustees, for DePaul University, where she earned her Masters' Degree in Music. Ms. Gerritson is President of the Women's Board of The Brookfield Zoo, among numerous other philanthropic affiliations. She is on the faculty of Northeastern Illinois University where she not only produces and directs their acclaimed operas and musicals, but recruits new students and administrates their highly regarded scholarship program. Ms. Gerritson has a black belt in karate and shares her love of the sport with her two sons, Nate and Josh, both who attend North Shore Dojo. 


  • Park City Karate Disabled Program (Park City, UT)

  • The Anixter Foundation for Adults with Disabilities (Highland Park, IL)

  • Tokey Hill Martial Arts Disabled Karate Program (Roslyn, New York)

  • US Paralympics

  • North Shore Dojo Disabled Karate Program (Glenview, IL)

  • Scholarships for individuals with disabilities who take part in sanctioned programs

  • US Disabled Karate Team

In karate, students learn about themselves, the importance of hard work, and how to be better people. They develop self-respect, discipline and dignity. My son has been changed forever by the incredible influence of karate.”

Julie McCarthy

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